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BS: Methane Sinks Ships?

Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 08:34 AM
InOBU 27 Oct 03 - 08:53 AM
Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 09:12 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 09:13 AM
GUEST,Santa 27 Oct 03 - 09:24 AM
GUEST,MMario 27 Oct 03 - 09:28 AM
Gareth 27 Oct 03 - 09:34 AM
GUEST 27 Oct 03 - 10:37 AM
GUEST 27 Oct 03 - 11:17 AM
Rapparee 27 Oct 03 - 11:17 AM
Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 11:26 AM
Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 11:56 AM
GUEST,unwitting muse 27 Oct 03 - 12:01 PM
TIA 27 Oct 03 - 12:08 PM
Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 01:00 PM
Don Firth 27 Oct 03 - 01:22 PM
Sorcha 27 Oct 03 - 01:36 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 27 Oct 03 - 01:45 PM
Sorcha 27 Oct 03 - 01:45 PM
Charley Noble 27 Oct 03 - 01:55 PM
NicoleC 27 Oct 03 - 03:21 PM
Rapparee 27 Oct 03 - 03:49 PM
HuwG 27 Oct 03 - 11:00 PM
muppett 28 Oct 03 - 04:14 AM
Dave Bryant 28 Oct 03 - 04:54 AM
fogie 28 Oct 03 - 04:58 AM
Wolfgang 28 Oct 03 - 05:11 AM
GUEST,Santa 28 Oct 03 - 05:42 AM
Dave Bryant 28 Oct 03 - 07:00 AM
GUEST,Green Man 28 Oct 03 - 08:52 AM
InOBU 28 Oct 03 - 11:22 AM
InOBU 28 Oct 03 - 11:23 AM
NicoleC 28 Oct 03 - 01:18 PM
Rapparee 28 Oct 03 - 02:55 PM
Charley Noble 28 Oct 03 - 04:04 PM
SINSULL 28 Oct 03 - 04:42 PM
Rapparee 28 Oct 03 - 04:52 PM
Gareth 28 Oct 03 - 07:03 PM
HuwG 28 Oct 03 - 09:25 PM
catspaw49 28 Oct 03 - 10:53 PM
JedMarum 28 Oct 03 - 11:12 PM
Rapparee 29 Oct 03 - 09:24 AM
Charley Noble 29 Oct 03 - 09:47 AM
Charley Noble 29 Oct 03 - 02:28 PM
Rapparee 29 Oct 03 - 02:57 PM
Charley Noble 29 Oct 03 - 04:17 PM
Dave Bryant 30 Oct 03 - 05:18 AM
Charley Noble 31 Oct 03 - 09:34 PM
Gareth 01 Nov 03 - 01:56 PM
Charley Noble 01 Nov 03 - 09:43 PM
Nigel Parsons 02 Nov 03 - 12:29 PM
Naemanson 02 Nov 03 - 06:33 PM
Peace 03 Nov 03 - 01:12 AM
Charley Noble 03 Nov 03 - 08:28 AM
GUEST,witless muse... 03 Nov 03 - 08:42 AM
Charley Noble 03 Nov 03 - 02:07 PM
Charley Noble 04 Nov 03 - 08:44 AM
GUEST,MMario 04 Nov 03 - 09:02 AM
InOBU 04 Nov 03 - 11:50 AM
Charley Noble 04 Nov 03 - 04:01 PM
Peace 04 Nov 03 - 04:02 PM
GUEST,MMario 04 Nov 03 - 04:10 PM
Dave Bryant 05 Nov 03 - 07:53 AM
EBarnacle 05 Nov 03 - 08:24 AM
Charley Noble 05 Nov 03 - 10:01 AM
Charley Noble 06 Nov 03 - 08:15 PM
GUEST,Heely 07 Nov 03 - 01:50 PM
Heely 07 Nov 03 - 10:31 PM
Charley Noble 08 Nov 03 - 09:18 AM
Amos 08 Nov 03 - 09:36 AM
Nigel Parsons 08 Nov 03 - 10:47 AM
GUEST 08 Nov 03 - 06:55 PM
The Fooles Troupe 08 Nov 03 - 09:51 PM
Rapparee 08 Nov 03 - 11:35 PM
Heely 08 Nov 03 - 11:50 PM
MMario 09 Nov 03 - 09:49 AM
Charley Noble 09 Jul 04 - 05:54 PM
Helen 09 Jul 04 - 06:16 PM
HuwG 10 Jul 04 - 01:22 PM
Charley Noble 10 Jul 04 - 08:06 PM
Charley Noble 18 Sep 08 - 07:20 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 18 Sep 08 - 11:27 PM
Charley Noble 19 Sep 08 - 10:44 AM
Sandy Mc Lean 19 Sep 08 - 10:56 AM
sapper82 19 Sep 08 - 11:38 AM
Charley Noble 15 Jan 09 - 12:59 PM
Charley Noble 21 Jul 10 - 01:46 PM
gnu 21 Jul 10 - 03:17 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 21 Jul 10 - 07:35 PM
Uncle_DaveO 21 Jul 10 - 08:11 PM
Charley Noble 21 Jul 10 - 10:42 PM
Donuel 21 Jul 10 - 11:49 PM
Penny S. 22 Jul 10 - 05:57 AM

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Subject: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 08:34 AM

One of my sea music band mates sent me this intriguing story which I'd like to share:

"It Came From Beneath the Sea

(Reuters)

01:50 PM Oct. 21, 2003 PT

Methane bubbles from the sea floor could, in theory, sink ships and may explain the odd disappearances of some vessels, Australian researchers reported Tuesday.

The huge bubbles can erupt from undersea deposits of solid methane, known as gas hydrates. An odorless gas found in swamps and mines, methane becomes solid under the enormous pressures found on deep sea floors.

The ice-like methane deposits can break off and become gaseous as they rise, creating bubbles at the surface.

David May and Joseph Monaghan of Monash University in Australia said they had demonstrated how a giant bubble from one of these deposits could swamp a ship.

"Sonar surveys of the ocean floor in the North Sea have revealed large quantities of methane hydrates and eruption sites," May and Monaghan wrote in their report, published in the American Journal of Physics.

"A recent survey revealed the presence of a sunken vessel within the center of one particularly large eruption site, now known as the Witches Hole."

"One proposed sinking mechanism attributes the vessel's loss of buoyancy to bubbles of methane gas released from an erupting underwater hydrate," they wrote. "The known abundance of gas hydrates in the North Sea, coupled with the vessel's final resting position and its location in the Witches Hole, all support a gas bubble theory."

No one has ever seen such an eruption and no one knows how large the bubbles coming off a methane deposit would be.

May and Monaghan created a model of a single large bubble coming up under a ship. They trapped water between vertical glass plates, launched gas bubbles from the bottom and used a video camera to record what happened to an acrylic "hull" floating on the surface.

"Whether or not the ship will sink depends on its position relative to the bubble. If it is far enough from the bubble, it is safe, "they wrote.

"If it is exactly above the bubble, it also is safe, because at a stagnation point of the flow the boat is not carried into the trough. The danger position is between the bubble's stagnation point and the edge of the mound where the trough formed."

Now some Mudcatters may suspect that I've created this story or at the very least embellished it. If so, be my guest and transport yourself to the website via the "blue clicky":

Click here, ye unbelievers

And those of you who are really good at searches, see if you can find some follow-up stories.

At the very least we should get a verse or two!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: InOBU
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 08:53 AM

Where is Spaw on this one? The thought of a gallent ship killed by a fart, it seems would be beyond his ability to sit still and keep silent (from either end!) Cheers Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:12 AM

"On Friday night we set sail..."

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, who thought it was aliens in the Bermuda Triangle


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:13 AM

Did Spaw ever get that SCUBA certificate he wanted when he was young?

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,Santa
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:24 AM

The problem with this theory is that for every case of a sunken ship, there should be many records from ships that came close to such an event, but avoided sinking.

I don't see why this should spoil any good song about it, after all cows don't jump over the moon. (just keeping in that methane subject)


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:28 AM

perhaps there have been - but the bubbles of methane may well appear to be a huge sea animal broaching or spouting. who knows?


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Gareth
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:34 AM

It has happened - A dynamically positioned (ie floating) oil drilling rig suffered a "blowout" in far eastern waters. The bubles of gas were sufficient to ruduce the overall density of the ocean surrounding the rig, and down she went. I can not recall the name, but the date was the mid 80's.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:37 AM

BLOW AT WITCH'S HOLE
(tune: Ghost Riders in the Sky)


As we set out one evening upon the Northern Sea
We were headed out a-fishing for to earn our daily fee
Our course was safely plotted, as any fool could tell
We never thought the Witch's Hole would drag us down to Hell!

Our charts were fully marked, or so our Captain thought
Avoiding every hazard, every shoal, and every rock
And tho' the Witch's Hole lay athwart our very lee
The Captain thought her repute a legend of the sea!

Chorus: Thar she Blows! Down we goes! Bubbles from the sea!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:17 AM

A silent threat but deadly, the methane from the hole
rising up through waters, amid the dark and cold
Just like a giant serpent or some monster from the deep
it dragged us down at witch's hole, forever there to sleep.

This was no bathtub bubble or a silly fishes fart
But a blow of great proportion from the earth's own mighty arse
And by the laws of physics when the gases did arise
The density of water fell, and we plunged out of the skies

Chorus:


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:17 AM

If methane could do it,why not carbon dioxide? Or any other trapped gas, such as what might come from a submarine volcano?

As for seeing such a thing, perhaps it has happened and was thought to be something else, such as MMario suggests above. The seas are full of strange reports.

Flicking a lit cigar butt overboard at just the right moment could have interesting results.

Are whales subject to flatulence? If so, could some of the whaling ships that have gone missing have been the victims of a pod of conniving, flatulent, whales?

Seems to me that the chances of a ship (small object) being at the edge of a methane bubble (random happening) in the ocean (huge object) at the right time would be vanishingly small. Not impossible, but approaching zero.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:26 AM

Very nice, Guest!

Maybe we could reformat your verses to something more nautical sounding. For some reason the tune of "The White Cockade" is suggested by your first two lines:

As we set out one evening upon the Northern Sea,
We were headed out a-fishing for to earn our daily fee;
We were headed out a-fishing, many miles off-shore,
When our ship was swallowed up, (she was swallowed up!)
Never to rise no more!

No rogue wave overwhelmed us, no giant squid nor octopus,
No giant whirlpool was in view, there was little time to fuss;
There was little time to fuss, me lads, as we sank beneath the waves,
But we all stood at attention, (stood at attention!)
All so resolute and brave.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:56 AM

Your verses are irristible to tinker with. Please forgive me, good Guest:

As we set out one evening upon the Northern Sea,
We were headed out a-fishing for to earn our daily fee;
We were headed out a-fishing, me, lads, having set our course so bold,
When our ship was all a-swallowed, (yes, she was swallowed!)
Dragged down the Witch's Hole!

No rogue wave overwhelmed us, no giant squid nor octopus,
No giant whirlpool was in view, there was little time to fuss;
There was little time to fuss, me lads, as we sank beneath the waves,
But we all stood at attention, (stood at attention!)
All so resolute and brave.

Our charts were fully up-to-date, so thought our Captain Brock,
Avoiding every hazard, every shoal and rock,
Every shoal and rock, me lads, upon the Northern Sea;
And we coursed the waves so bravely, (Yes, so bravely!)
Tho' the Witch's Hole lay athwart our very lee.

A silent threat but deadly, that methane from the Hole
Rising up from the depths, amid the dark and cold,
Amid the dark and cold, me lads, like some monster from the deep;
It dragged us down the Witch's Hole, (yes, down the Witch's Hole!)
Forever there to sleep.

This was no bathtub bubble or some silly fish's farce,
But a blow of great proportion from the earth's own mighty arse,
From the earth's own mighty arse, me lads, the methane did arise;
The density of water fell, (yes, the density of water fell!)
And thus proved our demise.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,unwitting muse
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:01 PM

I didn't notice my cookie wasn't set - now I don't want to admit who I am!

Charlie - hope to hear this sometime...


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: TIA
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:08 PM

The heck with a few piddlin' little boats. An oceanic fart probably caused the greatest mass extinction in history (Permian, 251 mya) in which 90% of earth's species perished! And all I can do is temporarily clear a room.

they use the word "burp" to be polite


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:00 PM

Dear Unwitting Muse-

No, I insist, you must share full credit for this ditty, and your share of millions in royalties. I don't want to be filthy rich by my lonesome.

Oh, shit, this is not going to work, as hundreds of Mudcat members "lose their cookies" in the mad scramble for royalties.

Just 'fess up, please!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Don Firth
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:22 PM

There was a television program about this a couple of years ago. I can't remember if it was Nova or something like Unsolved Mysteries, but I'm pretty sure it was Nova. They went into the matter fairly extensively, saying they knew for sure that there were these kinds of deposits on the ocean floor and they do indeed let go from time to time. Although they didn't draw any definite conclusions, they did do a tank experiment with a model ship, releasing a quantity of gas from the bottom of the tank—just a sort of foam of bubbles, not a single giant bubble or big bubbles in general. The model lost buoyancy and sank. Most persuasive. This, of course, raised a lot of speculation about places like the Bermuda Triangle. Fascinating!   

Mass extinctions? OY!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:36 PM

I read in (Nat'l Geogrphic?) about a lake in (South America?) that exploded because of this. Killed a bunch of people.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:45 PM

If such eruptions do occur as masses of tiny bubbles instead of one huge bubble, then they probably wouldn't be noticed by nearby ships. Millions of small bubbles bursting over a period of a few minutes would probably look similar to a large school of baitfish. Of course, if it was a fishing trawler that spotted the "baitfish school" and then steamed into it thinking there were foodfish underneath.... glug, glug.

Bruce


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:45 PM

Wrong on both counts. It was Smithsonian,in Africa and it was CO2, not methane. Oh well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:55 PM

Sorcha-

And not an explosion. Just the release of enough gas which when trapped in the lake valley killed off man and beast. No KABLUWIE!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: NicoleC
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 03:21 PM

Methane is usually released when the ocean temperature rises and the methane ice "melts" into gas. It's one of the theories for the losses in the Bermuda Triangle, as it could also affect planes in some circumstances. It sounds better than a mysterious curse to me.

In the geological record, periods of significant global warming are linked to methane release events. The temperature rises enough to cause a major release, then the effects cause a big spike in global temperature. Rinse & repeat. Not a happy thought given that we are living through the hottest years on record now, and no one sure how hot it would have to get and for how long to trigger a major methane release.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 03:49 PM

There AIN'T NO SUCH THING AS THE BERMUDA TRIANGLE!!! Read the book "The Bermuda Triangle Mystery: Solved" and find out about it.

Personally, I still think it's all whale poots.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: HuwG
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:00 PM

NicoleC, here is a link to a BBC documentary on the Permian Extinction: Click here.

The alarming thing about this extinction was its short timescale. The temperature went up by 5 degrees Centigrade / Kelvin over a few hundred thousand years; then in probably twenty to fifty thousand years, almost all life in the oceans died, and the temperature went up another 5 degrees.

The cause of the initial 5 degree rise was probably the eruption of the Siberian Traps; about twenty times the area and forty to fifty times the volume of the Columbia River basalts. There isn't likely to be vulcanicity on the same scale for the foreseeable geological future, but releasing all the CO2 buried and fixed in fossil fuels seems like a good way to try and repeat the same conditions, experimentally.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: muppett
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:14 AM

This was the 8.00 news this morning on Radio 2, you should have heard Terry Wogan's comments on the subject.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:54 AM

Let's hope that Spaw didn't learn to SCUBA dive. Perhaps that scenario could have been added to the recent thread dicussing the feasibility of The Golden Vanity's sinking.

And some were playing cards, and some were playing dice,
And some were in their hamocks, a-sporting with their wives.
Spaw let out a fart which brought tears to all their eyes,
And he sank them in the lowlands low.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: fogie
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:58 AM

It happens around any potential volcanic area such as the Azores as well as the Caribbean and presumably all over the Pacific, which must belie its name. On a related subject, how do they put bubbles in aero, and whats the best way of getting them out so you can eat the chocolate?


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 05:11 AM

As an addition to Rapaire's title about Bermuda: The author is Larry Kusche.

The original article has stated that it could happen (ship sinking by methane bubble) but that there still was 'no tangible evidence'. A real hazard it is, however, for oil/gas drilling.

With so many ships sailing the ocean since very long times such a sinking may have happened, but only as an extremely rare event. If these events were so frequent that they could explain the large number of supposedly mysteriously sunk ships in in Berlitz' fiction book we would have many reports of near misses or reports from ships close by.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,Santa
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 05:42 AM

To get the bubbles out of Aero you need to carefully melt the chocolate around them. I use my mouth to do this.

Alternatively you could try just holding it in your hand and squeezing gently. Or you could use a bain marie, and if you invert a funnel over the Aero you could collect the escaping bubbles in a testtube.   If you are in a rush a frying pan over a fire will do. Do not use a non-stick because scraping out the chocolate when cool risks damaging the surface.

More sophisticated techniques are required if you wish to separate the outer layer of chocolate from the filling in the fancier varieties. I leave this to you as a home project.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 07:00 AM

Alternatively, I'm sure that Liz the Sqeak would be willing to remove the chocolate for you and return the bubbles in an envelope.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,Green Man
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 08:52 AM

Greetings,

the reported hissing sounds associated with the Berm Tri as well as these mysterious walls of fog that appear suddenly could all be caused by outgassing from a submarine environment.

The weed in the sargasso sinks and rots producing millions of tiny bubbles on its surface, this accumulates over time and when disturbed by a shockwave caused for example by a passing boat they become detached and rise to the surface. The water takes on a milky appearance indicative of fine aeration with whatever gas is rising and this lowers the relative density of the water to the point where it no longer will support a floating vessel. The boat sinks quickly as the superaerated liquid is only about twice the density of air. You can't swim in it for the same reason.

I daesay a gigantic single bubble coud swallow a ship but have never heard of such an event, whereas there are reputed witnesses to the 'one minute the boat was there now it's gone' events that happen in the triangle. As for it being 'solved', I havent read the book so it can't be :-))

Anyway the above is the theory, even a submarine would have problems in that situation but might be survivable unless it hit the bottom very hard.

I love sailing and like a lot of others have heard (and told) all kinds of sea stories. This could be one of them.

Green Man


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: InOBU
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 11:22 AM

Dear folkies... this thread is why, when charting a course, I always take care never to sail over chicken farms...
Which reminds me of my favorite Zeb Tilton story... the great crosseyed schnoonerman, captain of the Alice Wentworth... who used to have his young nephew serve as his eyes in the bows of the Alice... and the first day aboard when Zeb told him, go up forward and yell back anytime ya see anything. A while goes by, and the kid yells, Uncle ZEB! I see ducks! Be those ducks walking or swimming? "The're walkin' Uncle Zeb! "READY ABOUT!"
Cheers
Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: InOBU
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 11:23 AM

This thread is also why piolts charts warn them not to fly over Spaws house.... Cheers, and pass the beans, Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: NicoleC
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 01:18 PM

HuwG - I was also referring to the Late Paleoscene Thermal Maximum period, which occurred 55 million years ago. Link here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 02:55 PM

I heard about the old oysterman on Chesapeake Bay who could tell where the boat was by the taste of the bottom on the lead line. Could tell to withing a few feet, in fact.

So his sons decided to really test the old man and loaded the bottom with the "soil" in a chicken coop.

That night, out in a fog, the old guy called for lead and then took the line and tasted to bottom.

"Back 'er!" he cried, "Back 'er! We're three feet into old lady Wentworth's chicken yard!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:04 PM

Rapaire-

Really! The order should be "Full astern, come about!"

But your story reminds me of one Capt. Morse tells about navaigating through Penobscot Bay in the fog. According to our good Captain, you send one of the boys forrard with a sack of potatoes. He's supposed to heave them out one by one, listen carefully, determine whether it goes "kerplunk" or "bonk." If one goes "bonk" he's to alert the Captain.

Say, how about some more verses?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: SINSULL
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:42 PM

I thought for sure that Spaw would show up with another Cletus and Paw adventure explaining all of the above. Somebody PM him. He won't answer but what the hell.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:52 PM

Heck, Charley, I grew up on the Mississippi. When we wanted to reverse the direction of the boat (up to 20 feet long, and a johnboat) we'd yell, "Quick, quick, go backwards or something!" This was uaually followed by a grinding sort of sound as the boat ran up on the log/sandbar/floating house/other boat/mine/buoy/locomotive/barge or whatever.

Other commands were "Quick, turn around!" and "Head for shore, the drain plug's failed!" and "Holy #@$%!! what #@#$@!!*% was that?"

To bring this back to the thread topic, I've seen trapped gases released from sunken vegetation in sloughs, bays, and such in rivers. Lots of 'em stunk, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Gareth
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 07:03 PM

Charley "Full Astern" - Under Sail ???

Tho I will confess to using an outboard as a "dive break" when pressed !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: HuwG
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 09:25 PM

My Dad could usually contrive to go astern when going about; he would invariably worry so much about the boom that he would forget which item to pull, and which way. He would end up in stays with the rudder on one tack, the jib sheeted home on the other, the mainsail flapping and the dinghy going slowly in reverse. OK, not "Full Astern", but good enough to cause chaos in any bunch of racers rounding a marker.

There is a story of an RAF Bomb Aimer, whose instructions to the pilot went roughly, "Left...left...left a bit...no, right...no, we're over, come back a bit, come back a bit...". It was just as well that Lancasters didn't have reverse thrust.

Nicole, thanks for the link. 14000 gigatons of trapped methane is an awful lot of discarded refridgerators or flatulent cetaceans (or degeneration of Cretaceous sapropelic sediments).


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: catspaw49
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 10:53 PM

I think The Boys are now pretty aware of the power of methane, propane,LNG, and the like. A few years ago on a cold January day, they all read Paw's birthday horoscope and were pretty depressed. It went like this:

"Born today you are a miserable pissant with no redeeming social value whatsoever. You are generous to a fault, of which, you have many. Your passion for all things artistic is overshadowed by your complete lack of talent for anything more difficult than passing copious quantities of sulphurous flatulence. You are narrow minded, completely bigoted, and steadfast in your maintenance of opinions shared only by Pakistani Dung Merchants and a pants presser in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, named Ignatz. Give up."

Isn't it amazing how accurate those things are? But The Boys didn't think so and after awhile they decided that the thing to do was something new and different. The Reg Boys are of course nuts about ice fishing and since Paw had never done it, they all took off to find a place. The weather around here doesn't always freeze the lakes and it was pretty mild that year so they were really happy to find a frozen pond right in downtown Columbus. What they obviously didn't know was that this was part of the new Hockey complex and skating park.

This resulted in their spending several months in both jails and hospitals. After setting up a shack and drilling numerous holes on the new Ice Rink in Columbus, they later explained to the police that they were just ice fishing. That would have gotten them off with a warning or a minor fine for such an idiotic mistake had not one of their holes penetrated a gas main. Even this wouldn't have been a major problem had not Paw and Cletus been along and were entertaining the Reg boys with a fart lighting performance which ended with an explosion taking out 2 square blocks of downtown Columbus. Typically, none of them, although hospitalized at the jail infirmary, would at first believe that they were NOT on a lake and DID rupture a gas line. Cletus just layed there in his bed, swathed in bandages, saying, "Damn,what a doozie."

So I think the gas thing would not surprise them at all.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: JedMarum
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 11:12 PM

Methane Stinks Ships


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 09:24 AM

Back in the '70s Uncles Mildred and Mary decided that they too wanted free energy on their farm up on Cedar Crick. Neither of them are overblessed with brains, but they get along okay, even if they are a tad confused because their parents had expected twin girls and got them instead.

Anyway, they heard about methane digesters somewhere, and decided to try it on the farm. They got some plans somewhere, maybe out of "Mother Earth News," and built one. Problem was, they'd never had much schooling after they learned to read and write their names, and they'd get confused by marks like ' and " and between feet and inches.

Which is probably why they built a methane digest that was a bit bigger than what was shown in the plans.

They were patient, though, and they shoveled the leavings of their two cows and two horses into it, along with the leavings from the outhouse and everything else they thought would be useful to the bacteria working therein.

One day, Millie and Mary got a little burp of methane and they were happier'n pigs in mudtime. They went out and bought a methane-powered generator so that they'd finally have electricity on the farm and called a well-driller to tap the waterlevel so they could close up the old cistern.

Next day a much bigger belch of methane burped up. Then, before they knew it and before they were ready, the digester was pumping out more methane than the city of Chicago could deal with in a week, to say nothing about their little forty-acre farm. It was becoming an explosion hazard of the first order, and the local volunteer fire department told 'em to shut it down.

Only they couldn't. Once them anaerobic bacteria started doing what they do, neither Mary nor Millie, and certainly not their sister, Aunt Nails, knew what to do.

But the boys were not anything if they weren't resourceful. They put a hose onto the methane output pipe and dropped the open end of it into Cedar Crick, figuring that the crickwater would backsiphon into the digester and dilute the stuff inside enough to stop the process.

Only the crick was lower than the digester, and the gas pressure inside would have held the crick out anyway. Instead, a huge bubble of methane built up under the waters of Cedar Crick and drifted unnoticed downstream to the Mississippi.

It drifted down the river towards the lock'n'dam, and just before it got there it drifted under a barge carrying 277,613,308,126 gallons of high-test gasoline -- and a spark from the engine exhaust of the barge somehow managed to ignite that bubble of methane.

The resulting explosion tossed everyone clear of the barge and into the river (no one was hurt, just dunked) and blew the entire barge two and a third miles into Missouri, where it flattened the town of Zon.

Zon never was much of a town, and after the flood of 1836 changed the course of the river and left Zon as a landlocked, instead of a riverfront, town it went downhill from there.

By the time the "Sara Belle" barge landed on top of it, Zon had been pretty well used up. In fact, the last resident had just moved and was a half mile down the road when the barge landed. Scared the pooh out him, too.

But he got lucky, because he was the actually the sole owner of Zon and by the salvage laws of Missouri he was legal owner of everything that fell out of the sky and landed on Zon. Previously, this had been chunks of "blue ice" discharged by passing airliners, but a gasoline barge was something different.

Anyway, it took years to straighten the matter out, and finally the feller got clear title and he cut a deal with a former Standard Oil company. He sold 'em the gasoline at a price than set him and his up in wealth for generations to come, and told 'em that they had to tell everyone where the gas had come from by changing their name. He had in mind something like "Harry's Gas."

The company agreed, but fooled him good on the name change. They couldn't see memorializing the man, so they memorialized the town. The gas is called Ex-Zon, only the company's ad agency spelled it Exxon.

This, I swear, is the absolute and complete truth of the matter. And I'll attest that while methane might sink ships, it certainly CAN blow them to hell or Missouri, whichever is closer.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 09:47 AM

Gareth-

"Full Astern" - Under Sail ???"

When you panic, you'll shout almost anything.;~)

However, if your ship were square-rigged an appropriate emergency order might well be "Full aback!"

Rapaire-

Thanks ever so much for your memory. It must have made a breaking news flash in its time. Maybe I should tell you the story about Father and the 40 gallon barrel of hard cider.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 02:28 PM

Back to the musical portion of this thread, a concluding verse to our ditty:

I was the sole survivor, me crewmates drown that day,
The Coast Guard came a-racing up, and snatched me from the wave,
They snatched me from the wave, me lads, which gave me quite a start,
And I surely would have gone down as well, (yes, gone down as well!)
If I didn't give a fart!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 02:57 PM

Charley, it was in every weekly paper from Lagrange clear down to Louisiana on the Missouri side and from Pontoosak to Hull on the Illinois side.

If you doubt me, I'll even tell you can go. To see the barges, I mean; I don't think that they've moved them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 04:17 PM

Rapaire-

Just goes to prove that reality is far more bizarre than even our warped imagination!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 05:18 AM

The lack of non-nautical language reminds me of that old BBC radio series "The Navy Lark". When Lt Phillips brought HMS Troutbridge into dock, you'd get things like "Left Hand down a bit, mind the bonnet, where's the brake ?, lower the under carriage - no that's in a plane isn't it ?". Each of these orders being repeated by CPO Pertwee. There would then be a series of tremendous crashes, rending and scraping noises followed by the sound of things dropping, then silence. The captain would then say something like "Mr Phillips, when you moor Troutbridge two hundred yards inland of the dockside, I think we can do without the customary whoa she bumps !".

Mind you I was once in a Thames lock and lady brought a very large hire-craft in at a silly speed. "Where are the brakes ?" she called to her husband on the lockside. We were all shouting at her to go "hard astern" - "Oh no", she said, "When I took my driving test, the instructor told me never to engage reverse gear until I'd come to a standstill". Thank god it was Romney Lock - one of the longest on the upper Thames.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 09:34 PM

Dave-

There was always the occasional skipper who would toss you an anchor as he sped by the gas float, one of my early memories of manning the marina gas dock one summer.

Sigh, no more verses. And we'll never know who Guest "Unwitting Muse" is. What a pity! Any guesses?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Gareth
Date: 01 Nov 03 - 01:56 PM

Oh I dont know Charly, my trot mooring on the Medway is equiped with a pickup loop, using an old inner tube as a shock absorber, and half inch chain as a "jesus" (="Jesus - hope this holds")

I am told that it is quite amusing to watch the hook go down, and yours truely scrambling forrad with boat hook to pick up the bow mooring, as the 20 footer slams back. - 2 knots to Zero in less than 20'

Mind you it makes single handing easier

My inspiration was the Fleet Air Arm.

There was a visiting boat on the trot ahead of me one Sunday PM - The look on his face as I came in was quite satisfying !!!

If any Nautical 'Catter wants a sketch of the design - please PM me with yor E-Mail address - Yes it works.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 01 Nov 03 - 09:43 PM

Gareth-

Instructive!

Now there are also some inspiring verses from days of old that go a step further:

The last to speak was our second mate,
Whose courage was second to none –
"Takes more than lip to save a ship,
I'll show you how 'tis done!"...

Then hoasting the anchor upon his back,
He leapt into the main;
Through foam and spray he clove his way,
And sunk and rose again...

Through foam and spray, a league away,
The anchor stout he bore,
Till safe at last, he made it fast,
And warped the ship ashore!
Yes, he warped the ship ashore!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 02 Nov 03 - 12:29 PM

This thread drift reminds me of boating on the Thames, my wife and I were pulling into Sandford Lock (travelling up-river) and I steered and controlled the engine while she stood ready with a mooring rope near the stern. As Sandford Lock has the greatest rise in level on the Thames she had to stretch to reach a bollard, and only just managed to reach one with a slight jump. Unfortunately I had yet to bring the boat to a full stop, and it slid gently from beneath her feet.
I wasn't quick enough to get a picture of her hanging against the lock wall, as the lock keeper grabbed her wrists and hauled her to the bank. Apparently this is a regular occurance, and people come from miles for the entertainment Sandford Lock provides.

Nigel


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Naemanson
Date: 02 Nov 03 - 06:33 PM

Tiny bubbles
Are no threat to me,
Tiny Bubbles
That rise up behind me.
But big bubbles,
Rising from the sea,
Those big bubbles,
Scare the bejezus out of me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Peace
Date: 03 Nov 03 - 01:12 AM

I thought 'loose lips' did that. (I can already see where this will go.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Nov 03 - 08:28 AM

Guest "Unwitting Muse"-

Some of us may actually sing "The Blow at Witch's Hole" publicly and it would be nice to credit my co-collaborator of this fine ballad. Anyone have a clue who he/she is?

My personal e-mail address is: ipbar@gwi.net

My lips are sealed, if required.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,witless muse...
Date: 03 Nov 03 - 08:42 AM

dammit charley! I really am emberassed about this...
tell you what - WHEN you have sung this publicly I will fess up.

tho' if you *must* know - you could always ask the joe-clones to identify me ( i give permission)


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Nov 03 - 02:07 PM

Well, A-musing Witless One, we could always identify you as TRAD! You can run but know that your past proceeds you.

Meanwhile I'm sinking in shame with regard to my proposed last verse. I wish my name wasn't Charley Noble.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 08:44 AM

Here's an alternative last verse to "The Blow at Witch's Hole":

I was the sole survivor, me messmates drowned that day,
The Coast Guard came a-racing up, and snatched me from the wave,
They snatched me from the wave, me lads, and saved me sorry skin,
Surely I'd have drowned as well, (yes, drowned as well!)
If I hadn't broken wind!

Considerably more tasteful IMHO,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 09:02 AM

I like that one better


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: InOBU
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 11:50 AM

So all ye young laddies, take a warning from me
Don't pass up potato pancakes when you sail on the sea
for the gas is uplifting when drowned you may be
store up that methain gas for the sake of boyancy...

The moral of the song?
Cheers Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 04:01 PM

Larry and MMario-

Thanks for your appreciation and contribution!

Just think, lads, years from now some poor innocent will revive this thread and be inspired (and informed) by our brilliance.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Peace
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 04:02 PM

I'ts been a gas!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 04 Nov 03 - 04:10 PM

and just think - some poor teacher will see this thread on the forum listed as a reference in a Term Paper "Authentic Folk Songs of Maritime Disasters"


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 05 Nov 03 - 07:53 AM

Nigel, I also have memories of Sandford lock. I was coming downstream from Oxford and as it was a hot day, decided I could do with a pint from the pub there. I'd just missed a lock and was tied up on the wooden piling and beam style layby, so I grabbed my tankard and started walking along the beam to get my beer. I was facing downstream, so I didn't see a large vessel coming down much too fast. It swerved to miss the last moored boat and hit the far end of the beam with a huge crash. The resulting shockwave threw me off the beam into the water on the inshore side. As the water was shallow I got badly bruised and knocked about - but at least I didn't lose my tankard.

Sheila Finn, the current editor of Folk London has done the "Human Mooring Warp" trick in Molesey lock, but she ended up in the water !


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: EBarnacle
Date: 05 Nov 03 - 08:24 AM

A few years back, I was bow lookout on a sailboat coming into Block Island's Great Salt Pond in a rain squall. We came around the jetty and I spotted the nun bouy [which had an distinctive reflective wrapping on its top] and shouted back to the captain: "Come to port! Either that's a nun bouy or the biggest damn bottle of Miller's I ever saw." We stuck in the mud but it was a rising tide, so we came off a couple hours later.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 05 Nov 03 - 10:01 AM

Dave-

Your accident could have been much worse. You could have been coming back with your tankard full, and been forced to try to finish it off while you were in the air.

One of my favorite aerodynamic exercises I ever witnessed on the waterfront was when my old friend Gary Clevidence was making his way down the float after a late night song party, guitar case in hand, in the pitchy black darkness, and stumbled over the tie-up rail along the edge of the float. Just before he disappeared under the surface, he reached out and placed his guitar case onto the float. We all cheered!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 06 Nov 03 - 08:15 PM

Well, gang, now I've done it, posted "The Blow at Witch's Hole" as a Lyr.Add above.

We're going to sing it at the Press Room this Saturday for the monthly Shanty Sing.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST,Heely
Date: 07 Nov 03 - 01:50 PM

Is it true what I heard about the word "shit"? It is rumored to be the letters written on manure packages that were shipped for fetilizer. It was dried and packaged, but as the ship took on bilge water it would get wet and begin producing methane gas. The first sailor below with a lantern would blow up the ship. So they marked the manure packages "Ship High In Transit". ??? Heely


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Heely
Date: 07 Nov 03 - 10:31 PM

OK. Why am I always the last thread? Doesn't anyone know about shipping manure on this site? YOu know. . . . S.H.I.T. . . . am I crazy or is this really a source of methane gas which is a potential new forecastle Chantey. "We sunk another one." "Time for a pumping chantey." . . Heely


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 09:18 AM

Helly-

Not to worry. Someone has to be the last poster on a thread and maybe it makes more sense to start a new and exciting one. This one appears to have run its course.

Of course there are lots of traditional sea shanties/chanties about shipping shit, mostly related to shipping guano (sea bird shit) from off-shore islands. Loading and unloading such cargo was said to have been one of the worst jobs in the world for those who needed to breath. Never heard of a ship actually exploding from ignited methane fumes, but if one did there probably wasn't much evidence left.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Amos
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 09:36 AM

We all hit End of Thread Syndrome once in a while, Heely. The great trhing is not to take it personal-like.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 10:47 AM

Heely: don't worry, you're not last, Amos is!

Nigel


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 06:55 PM

No, Nigel is!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 09:51 PM

Hmmm, isn't the manure thing an urban myth - either saw it here on Mudcat, or on another British Folk List... sounds like one of those delightful tales spun by one of the clever Mudcat Wagsters!

Robin


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Rapparee
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 11:35 PM

No, me is, er, I am, er, sum.

Isn't it more accurate to say methane STINKS ships?


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Heely
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 11:50 PM

Thanks for the laughs, guys. Just checking out a rumor before I use it in a gig. Heely


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: MMario
Date: 09 Nov 03 - 09:49 AM

Heely - the whole Store High In Transit is urban myth....


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Jul 04 - 05:54 PM

Refresh!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Helen
Date: 09 Jul 04 - 06:16 PM

It'd be interesting to know if any ships did explode, and also despite the linguistic pedigree cited here:

snopes.com - Urban legends: "Ship HIgh in Transit"

it is still possible that someone did actually make up an acronym to fit the word "shit".

Helen


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: HuwG
Date: 10 Jul 04 - 01:22 PM

Re. this business of using the anchor as a emergency break. The following anecdote can be found at The Pacific Steam Navigation Co's website. It has by now become "trad" among seafarers' tales, and I wil reproduce it in full here.


"It is with regret and haste that I write this letter to you: regret that such a small misunderstanding could lead to the following circumstances and haste in order that you will receive this report before you form your own preconceived opinions from reports in the world press, for I am sure they will tend to over-dramatise the affair.

We had just picked up the pilot, and the apprentice had returned from changing the "G" flag (signifying that I needed a pilot) for the "H" flag (indicating that I had a pilot on board). It being his first trip, he was having difficulty in rolling up the "G" flag. I therefore proceeded to show him how to do so. Coming to the last part I told him to "let go." The lad, although willing, is not too bright, necessitating my need to repeat the order in a sharper tone.

At this moment the Chief Officer appeared from the chartroom having been plotting the vessel's progress and, thinking it was the anchors that were being referred to, repeated the order to "let go" to the Third Officer on the forecastle. The port anchor, having been cleared away but not walked out, was promptly let go. The effect of letting the anchor drop from the "pipe" while the vessel was proceeding at full harbour speed proved too much for the windlass brake, and the entire length of the port cable was pulled out "by the roots". I fear that the damage to the chain locker may be extensive. The braking effect of the port anchor naturally caused the vessel to shear in that direction, right towards the swing bridge that spans a tributary to the river up which we were proceeding.

The swing bridge operator showed great presence of mind by opening the bridge for my vessel. Unfortunately, he did not think to stop the vehicular traffic, the result being that the bridge partly opened and deposited a Volkswagen, two cyclists and a livestock truck onto the foredeck. My ship's company are at present rounding up the contents of the latter which, from the noise, I would say were pigs. In his efforts to stop the progress of the vessel the Third Officer dropped the starboard anchor, too late to be of practical use, for it fell on the swing bridge operator's control cabin.

After the port anchor was let go and the vessel started to sheer I gave a double ring "Full Astern" on the Engine Room telegraph and personally rang the Engine Room to order maximum astern revolutions. I was informed that the sea temperature was 53 degrees and asked if there was to be a film that night. My reply would not add constructively to this report.

Up to now I have confined my report to the activities at the forward end of the vessel. Down aft they were having their own problems. At the moment the port anchor was let go, the Second Officer was supervising the making fast of the after tug and was lowering the ship's towing spring down onto the tug. The sudden braking effect of the port anchor caused the tug to run in under the counter of my vessel, just at the moment when the propeller was answering my double ring for "Full Astern". The prompt action of the Second Officer in securing the inboard end of the towing spring delayed the sinking of the tug by some minutes, thereby allowing the safe abandoning of the vessel.

It is strange, but at the very same moment of letting go the port anchor there was a power cut ashore. The fact that we were passing over a "cable area" at that time might suggest that we may have touched something on the river bed. It is perhaps lucky that the high-power cables brought down by the foremast were not live, possibly being replaced by the underwater cable, but owing to the shore blackout it is impossible to say where the pylon fell.

It never fails to amaze me, the actions and behaviour of foreigners during moments of minor crisis. The pilot, for instance, is at this moment huddled in the corner of my day-cabin, alternately crooning to himself and crying after having consumed a bottle of gin in a time that is worthy of inclusion in the Guinness Book of Records. The tug Captain, on the other hand, reacted violently and had to be forcibly restrained by the Steward, who has him handcuffed in the ship's hospital, where he is telling me to do impossible things with my ship and my person.

I enclose the names, addresses and insurers of the drivers of the vehicles now on my foredeck, which the Third Officer collected after his somewhat hurried evacuation of the forecastle. These particulars will allow you to claim for the damage they did in way of No. 1 cargo hatch.

It is sad to think that had the apprentice realised there is no need to fly pilot flags after dark, none of this would have happened.

For weekly Accountability Report I will assign the casualty numbers on my next report."


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 10 Jul 04 - 08:06 PM

Thanks, Huw, for this concise report.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 18 Sep 08 - 07:20 PM

Here's an update on this issue that a friend send me with links:

On the topic of The Blow at Witches' Hole, I offer the following from realclimate.org:

1.      Hank Roberts - methane releases in the Arctic -

click here for article

"However, our recent study in the Laptev Sea and the East-Siberian Sea (LESS) showed that CH4 supersaturation of surface water reached up to 10,000 %, implying that strong air-to-sea fluxes must occur at times."

click here for article

"At around 110 degrees easterly longitude, when we where wrestling with drift ice in western Laptev Sea, we discovered two new areas where methane concentrations in both the water and in the air above clearly exceeded the normal methane concentration in Arctic. A few days later a new area in the eastern Laptev Sea was discovered at 133 easterly longitudes."

Click here for article

"Here we report a new method of measuring ebullition and use it to quantify methane emissions from two thaw lakes in North Siberia. We show that ebullition accounts for 95 per cent of methane emissions from these lakes, and that methane flux from thaw lakes in our study region may be five times higher than previously estimated."

With "ebullition" we add another word to our vocabulary. And I never thought of "The Blow" in terms of its effect on global climate.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 18 Sep 08 - 11:27 PM

This thread is too long to read in detail right now so I am sorry if this is repetitive.
Methane does not stink. It is totally odorless. That's why gas detectors are needed in coal mines. In earlier years canaries were taken into mines and when they died the miners got out quickly. What stinks is other gases sometimes found mixed in like hydrogen sulphide and sulpher dioxide. Methane constantly leaks from both land and seabed into the atmosphere, especially from coal deposits. It is said to be many times stronger as a greenhouse gas tha CO2.
In coal mining areas you can often watch bubbles rise in ponds and lakes, or if by the ocean, from docks on a calm day. When ponds freeze over in colder areas methane is sometimes trapped beneath the ice and sometimes by drilling a small hole a flare can be made by igniting the escaping gas. Scientists tell us that we can change global warming by reducing CO2 emissions. They offer no solution for natural methane emission which is far worse so I doubt that CO2 reduction by itself will do it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 19 Sep 08 - 10:44 AM

Sandy-

Thanks for the additional information.

It's true that this thread is rather long but its turns between facts and fiction are most intriguing. And there is a fine song embedded in it that we may revive next weekend at a maritime festival.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 19 Sep 08 - 10:56 AM

Thanks Charley,
When I have time I'll read through it more thoroughly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: sapper82
Date: 19 Sep 08 - 11:38 AM

Sandy, the canaries usually passed out and often survived. Later cages for them actually contained oxygen bottles to revive them!

However, going back to the original posting, I remember reading a thriller novel (Modesty Blaise I think??) where the villain's ship was moored alongside a gas rig and was sunk when the heros blew the pipe carrying the gas from the sea bed and the bubbles caused a fatal loss of bouyancy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 15 Jan 09 - 12:59 PM

refresh!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 01:46 PM

Refreshing!


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: gnu
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 03:17 PM

Thanks... I missed it first time around. Interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 07:35 PM

""it is still possible that someone did actually make up an acronym to fit the word "shit".""

"Swansea Harbour Internal Transport"?

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 08:11 PM

Don, if you look at Snopes.com, and search for S.H.I.T., you'll find an item, a claim that this word is from the initial letters of "Ship High in Transit".

And Snopes says:

False.

Examples:

[Collected on the Internet, 2002]

History in the making!!!!

Fabulous bit of historical knowledge: Ever wonder where the word shit comes from ... well here it is

Certain types of manure used to be transported (as everything was back then) by ship ... well in dry form it weighs a lot less, but once water (at sea) hit it, it not only became heavier, but the process of fermentation began again, and one of the by products is methane gas . . . and as the stuff was stored below decks in bundles you can see what could (and did) happen, methane began to build up below decks and the first time someone came below at night with a lantern . . . BOOOOM! Several ships were destroyed in this manner before it was discovered what was happening. After that the bundles of manure where always stamped with the term S.H.I.T on them which meant to the sailors to "Ship High In Transit". In other words high enough off the lower decks so that any water that came into the hold would not touch this volatile cargo and start the production of methane.

Bet you didn't know that one.


I won't give you their essay which blows this one out of the water. If you are interested, I suggest you go to Snopes.com, search for "S.H.I.T.", and read the highly interesting explanation.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 10:42 PM

I think "shit" is derived from the German "shize."

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 11:49 PM

This has often been the most plausible speculation for certain Bermuda triangle disapperences of ships. Maybe the gas might even disorient low flying pilots?


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Subject: RE: BS: Methane Sinks Ships?
From: Penny S.
Date: 22 Jul 10 - 05:57 AM

The acronym story popped up in a local paper under the name of one Bob Ogley, who usually does local history and published books about the 1987 hurricane and Biggin Hill, among other things. I wrote to him, unaware of Snopes, but possessing an Anglo-Saxon dictionary, which gave "scite" as meaning what it means - the German connection predates the German use of z where English uses t. I never had a response.
Penny


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